Romania fears loss of Covid aid
Romania recently received 1.85 billion euros from the EU's Covid recovery fund. The disbursement of 7.2 billion euros to Hungary and 40 billion to Poland, however, is still under review and will probably not be completed this year. Romania's press voices growing concern that payments to Bucharest could also be suspended in view of deficits in the rule of law there.
The problems are already here
Columnist Ovidiu Nahoi writes on the Romanian service of Radio France Internationale:
“We too could one day find ourselves in the same situation as the two members of the Visegrád Group. For example, if the objectives of the coronavirus reconstruction fund are in some way compromised by poor procurement and conflicts of interest. Or if the famous special prosecution unit for investigations against magistrates is not abolished. As in the case of the Polish Disciplinary Chamber, which was ruled incompatible with EU law by the European Court of Justice. And as in the Polish case, the Constitutional Court in Romania also rejected the primacy of European law. True, the ruling only refers to this case and is not general in nature.”
EU will be on to Romania soon
So far there is no sign of the promised judicial reforms in Romania, columnist Dan Tapalaga criticises on G4Media.ro:
“If Romania continues on its anti-reform course in the justice system, if it continues to show a lack of political will in the fight against corruption - which effectively means disregarding EU values and undermining the rule of law - it is only a matter of time before the country shows up on the European Commission's radar. Already, I hear more and more voices in Brussels and in Western government offices asking why when it comes to rule of law violations only Poland and Hungary are discussed, but not Romania.”